4 Biggest Digestive Issues and How to Tame Them
Digestive disorders are responsible for the majority of visits made to doctor’s offices today. While uncomfortable, many of them can be alleviated with a few simple lifestyle changes or even remedies that are herbal or over-the-counter. Tummy trouble? Read on for some of the biggest issues to plague the digestive system and tips for feeling better.
1. Acid reflux
It is hugely unpleasant to experience the symptoms of reflux. You will be hit with heartburn, that hot almost burning sensation that feels like it’s rising up for your abdomen right into your chest. Frequent experience of this could mean GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease), so if you find stomach acids rising up your throat or get heartburn twice a week or more, that is when you need to see the doctor.
For everyone else, remember that as you age, your body can’t handle eating pizza at midnight like it used to. Watch what you eat and when you eat it. For that wild night, keep some OTC relief around like Tums.
2. Lactose intolerance
If you are lactose intolerant, you do not have the necessary enzyme you need to digest the main sugar found naturally in milk. It affects as many as 50 million Americans. Some people have light symptoms, while others have much more severe reactions.
Anything from diarrhea to cramping and gas to bloating can occur, often about 30 minutes after consuming any dairy product. Thankfully though, there are OTC pills that can supplement your body with that missing enzyme. You can also get lactose-free milk.
3. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBS)
IBS causes abdominal pain as well as diarrhea. It can also lead to anemia and rectal bleeding. The most common diseases that inflame the bowels are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. They are both caused by the immune system being unhealthy, leaving the gastrointestinal tract vulnerable. Taking care of yourself and your immunity is a step in the right direction to prevent IBS. Otherwise, you will need to take prescriptions medication for anti-inflammatory agents and steroids to control it.
If you ever feel bloated and just can’t go, you are definitely not alone. Laxatives account for the majority of OTC sales in America. While taking laxatives is not a bad idea on occasion, you never want to take stimulant laxatives too often or it will cause your insides to depend on it, thus requiring more and more of it until your body becomes immune to it.
You can keep things moving by exercising frequently and drinking plenty of water. But even then, there are bound to be times you get backed up. Milk of Magnesia is a good solution for these rare moments to help clear you out and bring you comfort.
Do you have any of these uncomfortable digestive issues? What are you doing to control them? Be sure you consult your doctor to treat the problem.